Fire service tackle truck blaze near Slane

Story by Paul Neilan

Wednesday, 6th July, 2011 4:57pm

Fire service tackle truck blaze near Slane

A fireman tackles the blaze near Slane on Monday night.

An articulated truck spectacularly burst into flames crossing the bridge in Slane just after midnight on Monday 4th July but the quick thinking of its driver made sure a potentially lethal situation was avoided.

Just after midnight, Navan Fire Service received an emergency call from Slane where a truck driver for the delivery company Target had noticed in his mirror that a fire had started on one of the back wheels of his articulated vehicles while he was driving.

The driver, from Derry, was travelling from the North to a depot in Dublin with various cargo on board, including peat moss bags, treadmills and tyres. He made a decisive move which involved getting the truck into a lay-by and then set about unhitching the cab and taking it to a safe distance away before making the call while the fire grew.

One local onlooker was out walking his dog and witnessed the whole fiery spectacle and the exploding cargo.

"A truck started to go on fire while traveling across Slane bridge," he said. "The truck driver made it over the bridge and could see smoke so he pulled in near the Millhouse Hotel.

"Twenty minutes later, the truck was ablaze. It let off several explosions that could be heard up to a mile away. The driver seemed a little shaken but calm, the fire engine arrived shortly afterwards, along with the gardai who blocked traffic until the blaze was made safe," he said.

Navan Fire Service said four of its units were "on the scene for almost two hours and it was around 3am when we got back in". Fire officers praised the driver who had "pulled into a lay-by and was able to save the tractor, which took a cool head".

Navan gardai have confirmed they are treating the blaze as accidental and commended the driver's "quick thinking" during the incident.

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